McMurry University Names New Board Chair and Three New Board Members

  Gary Ellison
  Friday, July 15, 2016 9:01 AM
  Archives 2014 - 2015

Abilene, TX


Retired healthcare insurance executive Lynn Yearwood '70 has been elected to a three-year term as Chair of the McMurry Board of Trustees. She has served on the board for the past four years as chair of the Board's trusteeship committee, which oversees recruitment, training of new board members, evaluation standards for the board and recommendations for honorary degrees, among other duties. She also served as McMurry’s interim president from May 29 to August 10, 2013.

Also, three new members have joined the board: Lisa Chavez ’01, Rev. George Price ’74 and Bill Caffey ’73.

Yearwood began her career as a high school teacher at East Alton-Wood River Community High School in Wood River, Illinois. She taught a wide variety of English, speech, and theater classes for 13 years. During that time, she also served as English Department Chairperson and later as Humanities Division Chair.

She transitioned out of education in 1986 and led both single and multi-site organizations for over 16 years in Health Insurance management. While her career began in training and development, it then migrated to organizational planning and development shortly after joining General American Life Insurance Company. She transitioned again to operations management and served in increasingly senior and broad assignments including Vice President of Operations at General American Life Insurance (later Great West) and later as Chief Operations Officer and Vice President of Technology at HealthLink, a subsidiary of Anthem. She has held management and budget responsibility for multiple office locations across the country, including over 1,000 employees and $70M budgets.
She holds a B.A. in English and Speech from McMurry University; an M.A. in Organizational Communications and certification in Educational Supervision and Leadership from Southern Illinois University. She completed post-graduate studies in University Educational Administration at Saint Louis University. Lynn has been married to her husband Darrell for 43 years. They make their home in suburban St. Louis, MO. They have one adult son who lives in Portland, ME.

Lisa Chavez ’01 is a partner with the Abilene law firm Wagstaff LLP.  She attended McMurry from 1997 to 2001, graduating with a B.B.A. Summa Cum Laude. She attended Texas Tech Law School from 2002 to 2005, graduating Magna Cum Laude.

After law school, she joined the firm of Wagstaff LLP and specializes in business transactional and energy related work. Ms. Chavez represents a number of businesses in the oilfield industry. She is also experienced in the wind energy sector and has assisted in the development of numerous wind projects throughout Texas, including real estate, title policy and survey review, and in the preparation and review of title documents and wind leases.

She has one daughter, Lili Owens, age 6. Her sister Tanya Miles ’01 also graduated from McMurry.

Rev. George Price ’74 currently is the Abilene District Superintendent for the Northwest Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church.  Before that he served several churches in the conference, including: Quitaque-Flomot, Claude, Spur-Dickens, Canadian, Slaton, Littlefield, Gruver and Childress.

Reverend Price was born and raised in Levelland, Texas, where he graduated from Levelland High School in 1969. After graduating from McMurry in 1974 with a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education, he attended Asbury Seminary where he received a Master of Divinity degree in 1978. He then returned to the Northwest Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Reverend Price has served on boards and committees within the conference. He has served on the Ceta Canyon board of trustees, the Conference Finance and Administration Committee, the Conference Board of Pension and Health Benefits, the Camp Butman trustees and the Conference Leadership Team.

He  is married to Karen Kelley Price, McMurry ’71, a retired elementary school teacher. They were married in 1971 and have three sons: Jeremy, who, with his wife, Jennifer, heads a humanitarian relief organization in White River, South Africa; Zachary, who with his wife, Anneke, is an agricultural trainer and educator with an organization in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and Caleb, who is an event production manager in Austin, Texas.

Bill Caffey ’73 was born and raised in Albany, Texas.  He graduated from McMurry University in 1973 with a degree in chemistry. The following day he was employed by Koch Industries where he would work for the next 35 years.

Mr. Caffey began his career with Koch as a chemist for Koch Oil in Watonga, Oklahoma. He was promoted to Chief Chemist in 1976 for Koch Hydrocarbon in Medford, Oklahoma. He would later be promoted to Superintendent of Measurement and Quality Control, Manager of Technical Services, General Manager of Pipelines, President of Koch Gathering Systems and President of Koch Pipelines.

In 1992, Mr. Caffey was named Vice President of Koch Industries for Operations Excellence. His responsibilities included supervising and improving operations for the domestic U.S. Operations. Those duties also included the application of Market Based Management, one of the keys to Koch’s success developed by Charles Koch. During these years, the key tenets of Operations Excellence were developed along with the ability to apply those tenets to both the existing companies and the new acquisitions. A few of those tenets were one hundred percent compliance with government rules and regulations, world class operating cost structures and project costs, and the ability to right size organizations to achieve them.

In 1998, Mr. Caffey was named Executive Vice-President of Koch Industries and a member of the Koch board of directors. His duties included management of operations of Koch Companies worldwide, Koch’s Corporate Operations Excellence Program, and Koch’s Corporate Compliance Programs Worldwide. He also served on the Board of Directors for Kosa, Flint Hills Resources, Koch Pipeline, Koch Chemical Technology Group, and Invista. During part of this period, both the CFO and General Counsel of Koch Industries reported to him.

In 2005, Koch finalized the $21 billion acquisition of Georgia Pacific.  Charles Koch, chairman of Koch Industries, asked Joe Moeller, Koch Industries President and COO, and Mr. Caffey, to transfer to the Atlanta-based headquarters of Georgia-Pacific to incorporate the company into Koch Industries. Mr. Caffey was named Executive Vice President for Operations Excellence and Corporate Compliance and a member of the Georgia-Pacific board of directors. After implementing the three year plan for the transition of the Georgia-Pacific acquisition, he retired to his ranch n Texas where he raises Angus cattle and exotic animals.


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